Easy Shrimp Aglio e Olio is the simplest, most delicious pasta recipe you can make. The perfect dinner recipe for weeknight meals.
Table of Contents
Full recipe for Pasta Aglio e Olio with shrimp with amounts can be found in the recipe card below.
- Shrimp. Fresh or frozen (and thawed), peeled and deveined.
- Olive oil.
- Chilli flakes / red pepper flakes.
- Lemon juice.
- Pasta. I prefer long pasta for this (spaghetti, linguini, tagliatelle, etc) but any pasta shape will work.
- Salt and pepper.
- Parmesan, for serving.
How to make Shrimp Aglio e Olio
- Cook the pasta: Bring a large pot of salted water to the boil. Add pasta of your choice and cook until al dente. Drain, reserving 1 cup of cooking water. While the pasta cooks, make the sauce.
- Cook the shrimp: Pat the shrimp dry with paper towels before cooking to ensure they brown a little. This will add even more flavor to the finished dish. Heat a few tablespoons of olive oil in a large frying pan then add the garlic. I like slicing the garlic super thinly but you can crush the cloves too. Fry the garlic and chilli flakes until the garlic just starts to turn golden. Be careful here as garlic can burn quickly. Add the shrimp, salt, pepper and lemon juice and cook until the shrimp are pink and opaque throughout. Remove from the heat, stir in the parsley and cooked pasta along with a splash of the pasta cooking water. Toss until the sauce and the pasta are well combined then season to taste and serve.
How long to cook shrimp
Shrimp (or prawns) cook very quickly when cooked in a hot pan. Once the prawns have turned evenly pink and opaque, they are cooked. This takes approximately 3-5 minutes in total. Take care not to overcrowd the pan as this will cause the shrimp to steam instead of pan-fry.
Easy Pasta recipes
- Creamy lemon garlic shrimp pasta
- Spaghetti Aglio e Olio
- Pasta with basil cream sauce
- Spicy tomato bacon pasta
Easy Shrimp Aglio e Olio
- 500 g / 1lb spaghetti
- 4 tbsp olive oil
- 4-6 garlic cloves thinly sliced
- 1-2 tsp chilli / red pepper flakes
- 500 g (1lb) shrimp peeled and deveined
- ½ cup grated Parmesan
- ½ cup parsley finely chopped
- Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add the spaghetti and cook until al dente.
- Heat a large frying pan/skillet over medium-high heat then add the oil and garlic.
- Add the chilli flakes and toast until the garlic starts to turn golden.
- Add the shrimp and cook until pale pink and opaque throughout. Season with salt and pepper and add lemon juice. Add a few tablespoons of the pasta's cooking water and remove from the heat.
- Once the pasta is cooked, carefully transfer the cooked spaghetti to the pan with the shrimp with a pair of tongs. Add a few tablespoons of the pasta cooking water and toss to emulsify.
- Add the Parmesan and parsley and continue tossing until the pasta is well coated. At this point, you can add more water if you think the pasta needs a little extra sauciness. Taste and season to taste if necessary then serve with extra Parmesan.